sitting on top of the worldLike a football team that has trained for a big game, you have an idea what the plan is because your coach, the ‘search engine’ can guide you, but in the end it comes down to your own ability to call and make the plays in order to put points on the board. Now you have to work to establish your plan to win the game.

Plan your work and work your plan

This is sound advice when you are seeking a job, seeking a career if you are beginning a career or just trying to find your niche in life. Working and developing a plan entails establishing a point on the horizon as your destination. Planning takes into consideration your interests and what motivates you and gives you satisfaction. Every step should include those two elements. If your career offers neither of those thoughts then you will be unhappy and forever searching for an answer. You must have a plan to get to that goal or destination. That plan would be education, training, establishing contacts in that industry and keeping up with what the industry demands. Work it!

Do your homework!

This is the most important thing that you can do. Look and see who does what you do or want to do. Look at the companies and learn about them. Look for companies who do related work. In our society many companies have divisions under non-related names. These are sometimes subsidiaries or peripheral companies that work with specifics. You may want to work for NASCAR, well there are many market and aftermarket and peripheral companies that are affiliated with NASCAR. I had a friend who loved art and graphic design and loved NASCAR, and with a little research he was able to go to a graphics company that designs the skins for the advertising on the NASCAR vehicles and their teams. You must be imaginative but also realistic. The worse thing that you can do is to respond to a job offer and go to an interview and ask:”What does this company do?” The short answer to that question is, “We don’t hire people who don’t research what we do before they come here for a job”!

Are you where you need to be?

Now that you have a plan and a goal and an objective comes a reality check. Are you where the fish are biting? Are you fishing for sailfish in a pond? In other words are there companies that need your skills or abilities or training where you are or do you need to seek other locations? Job opportunities may not exist in your area but there are other areas where you may be in high demand. The online tools that are available can allow you to search other locations for your heart’s desire. Many considerations must come into play when a decision to move is made known. How will a move affect you and your family? Have you discussed it? Truly some careers are very evident and knowing that if you are a deep sea diver that living in the mountains are not going to be conducive to finding suitable work. But what happens when your field is outsourced or your opportunities are eliminated there where you are? You must go back to the drawing board and have a ‘back up plan’ to fall back on.

Networking is the best means of getting to your goal.

Whether it is where you live or if you must make a change of locale, it is always better when you know someone or can get to someone who knows someone or who is someone. There are professional network sites, like LinkedIn.com that offer a means to develop your profile online. You can use it to link to others that are on LinkedIn as well. There are tools that enable you to define people, companies and groups and organizations. It also allows you to find connections to people that you may know who know others in those companies that are of interest to you.

Job Lead Prospecting 102

There are other means of looking for job prospects. Newspapers; signs on businesses; signs outside of buildings; many places have brochures that solicit for career opportunities within their companies; flyers for temporary work and seasonal work; Online “help wanted” ads from area newspapers; bulletin boards; Penny-Saver ads; networking with friends and having them keeping an eye out for you as well. Governmental websites and institutions and county and city agencies all provide career opportunities. Job fairs have recruiters who are seeking prospects who come to those fairs. The Boy Scout motto was right. Be Prepared. Make it a point to keep a copy of your resume with you at all times.

References speak of you and who you are

You need to develop two sorts of reference. One will be a personal reference, usually someone who knows you and can speak to your personal attributes and integrity, like a good friend. The second will be a professional reference that knows your work ethic and will speak to that end. There is a third that would be a reference to your spiritual side, like a pastor or counselor who can attest to your ability to interact with others. It is not necessary but it is very insightful and can sometimes make the difference. You must contact whoever you are asking to give you a reference and ask for permission to use them adding to what capacity you are asking them to speak. If they agree you need their proper name, mailing address, email address, and phone number and a description of what they do and their relationship to you. This sort of preparation is always a work in progress and many companies seek a well rounded person who reflects those attributes at work as well as their private lives. And speaking of private lives, remember that we are in an open society where technology can find out a lot about a perspective employee.

We live in a transparent society

This is a transparent society and what we do and say can find its way to the eyes of the world. We are online with all sorts of websites and social sites that we feel free to express ourselves without fear of censorship. You put your most intimate thoughts and ideas online and your friends make comments that the world can and does see. Likewise a perspective employer can see into your fishbowl as well. With enough information an employer can find or hire someone to find out whether you are what they want to represent their company. Beware that too much public information and personal opinion could sway a job out of your reach.

Filed under: Job Search Engines

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